Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

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Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by Jürgen Erhard » Wed Mar 07, 2018 10:32 pm

I have no idea where this should go, I just know that I hate this effect. If I want *SMALL* enemy bases, I don't expect bases with dozens of spawners. *ANYWHERE*, whether close to or far from base.

Context: this is a snippet from the "Generate preview" map. Using RSO, but with "Use vanilla biter generation" set.
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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by eradicator » Wed Mar 07, 2018 11:00 pm

Factorio map settings are a bit weird. As they don't allow you to actually change to total amount of biters/resources. You can only change the distribution of things. Also frequency and size are (simplified) both the same setting, but reversed. So if you make them both small or both large they cancel each other out. Try: very high/very small/very poor and see if that is closer to what you expect. Use the map preview button to see the effect.

I definetly agree that this could not be more unintuitive and the whole concept of not being able to change the amount should be overhauled.

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by bobingabout » Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:03 am

I can't speak for all situations, but a believe changing the noise layers does change the way things generate in the game.

And by that I mean, if you turn off the ore fields (like RSO does), it can make other things spawn differently, like more biters than you should have.

I know when people use bobores, it drastically changes the size of ore fields.
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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by PacifyerGrey » Thu Mar 08, 2018 9:33 pm

Those settings do not completely cancel each other. However there is a big issue with resource generation.

The main problem with current (new) resource generator is that it seams to be using noise generator function for resource distribution just like terrain generation. Not only it uses RNG for spot location and amount control but it uses Perline noise height map for every resource. And when you think in terms of noise parameters frequency and size are opposite of each other and are controlled by the same noise parameters.

This is the main culprit of current generation. It does not interpret those words like people expect it to.
We do expect frequency increase the number of resource patches but do not expect it to decrease their sizes as the side effect and vice versa. Also being a noise function it also behaves as such by randomly creating patches of unexpected sizes both small and large. And again being totally random it often gives unpredictable results like over abundance of some resource or total absence of one.

RSO has control over resource distribution and results in always predictable results. It is far superior in terms of fairness and predictability but results look more dull compared to new vanilla.

I am sure Wube will find a way to balance things out and fix it at some point. Personally I am tired of bells and whistles and the only thing I want to be changed in the game is map/resource gen

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by AileTheAlien » Mon Mar 26, 2018 3:15 am

I would also like these map generation settings changed; Frequency and size should be independent. I don't know how hard it would be to change this, and keep the random shapes you get, by using the current method that's mostly (or appears to be) just a noise function plus some thresholds.

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by Deadly-Bagel » Mon Mar 26, 2018 9:25 am

bobingabout wrote:I can't speak for all situations, but a believe changing the noise layers does change the way things generate in the game.
I don't think so, in the interests of testing copper vs iron availability (as I had a string of games where copper ore was ridiculously rare within a 1,000 tile radius, like 2-3 million Copper vs 80 million Iron) I was using the same game seed but removed biters and water, the iron and copper patches remained the same other than the new ones that were previously underwater.

Perhaps adding new types of ores and such would shift ores and biters onto a different noise layer which could affect generation, but it's still using the same algorithm so should work in the same way (if not with identical results).
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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by Hedning1390 » Mon Mar 26, 2018 11:13 am

PacifyerGrey wrote:We do expect frequency increase the number of resource patches but do not expect it to decrease their sizes as the side effect and vice versa.
Not true. I expect there to be a setting that can increase the "fracturization" of a thing without changing its overall value. This is what frequency does. At most a renaming is in order.
Both size and richness do change the amount of resources per unit area, at least when it comes to ore.

Like in civilization you can set oceans to different percentages (size), like 70% of the map should be ocean, but you can also choose between Pangaea, continents or archipelago (frequency). Naturally a Pangaea "island" is much larger than an archipelago island even though you didn't change the size setting. I wouldn't want it any other way in that case, and not in factorio neither.

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by PacifyerGrey » Mon Mar 26, 2018 2:58 pm

Hedning1390 wrote:
PacifyerGrey wrote:We do expect frequency increase the number of resource patches but do not expect it to decrease their sizes as the side effect and vice versa.
Not true. I expect there to be a setting that can increase the "fracturization" of a thing without changing its overall value. This is what frequency does. At most a renaming is in order.
Both size and richness do change the amount of resources per unit area, at least when it comes to ore.

Like in civilization you can set oceans to different percentages (size), like 70% of the map should be ocean, but you can also choose between Pangaea, continents or archipelago (frequency). Naturally a Pangaea "island" is much larger than an archipelago island even though you didn't change the size setting. I wouldn't want it any other way in that case, and not in factorio neither.
This is a matter of interpretation.
Given current naming we can definitely say what they should mean:
Frequency - how frequent are patches found. It is their number per square unit.
Size should mean the average size of ore patch.
Richness means the number of ore persquare unit of the patch itself.

Your scenario can most likely be described by only two values - richness (same here) and frequency. Even in your description you define richness and size as defining the same value but it is a matter of preference.

I do understand the idea behind current implementation. We are getting a 2d noise with set major frequency (defined as frequency in settings), we are setting a threshold level for this function value which will mean the patch is there (defined by size) and we are adding a multiplier coefficient (defined as richness).

This is nice as a concept but we are getting seriously inconsistent results with it. And it is generally not what most of players expect it to be.
If you are advocating your interpretation of these settings then they should be renamed to reflect their true meaning .

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by Hedning1390 » Tue Mar 27, 2018 2:54 am

"Frequency - how frequent are patches found. It is their number per square unit."
This is exactly what frequency does. Increase frequency splits the patches up so that there are more per area unit.

What is the inconsistency you are talking about? Yes, there has been bugs, but overall I'm getting consistent results. Increased richness does give me more per ore square, increased size larger patches, and increased frequency more split up patches. This is how it should be. You should be able to change the distribution without also lowering or increasing the amount.

If a renaming would make things better then sure, but what would that name be? "fracturization"? "distribution"? Is there a better name that frequency?

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by Frightning » Tue Mar 27, 2018 3:57 am

Hedning1390 wrote:"Frequency - how frequent are patches found. It is their number per square unit."
This is exactly what frequency does. Increase frequency splits the patches up so that there are more per area unit.

What is the inconsistency you are talking about? Yes, there has been bugs, but overall I'm getting consistent results. Increased richness does give me more per ore square, increased size larger patches, and increased frequency more split up patches. This is how it should be. You should be able to change the distribution without also lowering or increasing the amount.

If a renaming would make things better then sure, but what would that name be? "fracturization"? "distribution"? Is there a better name that frequency?
I would expect frequency to not affect amount of resources on the map (by much), but to control how clustered versus scattered the resources are, with higher frequency meaning more smaller patches. I would expect size to affect amount of resources on the map, making patches bigger, but not really changing how many their tend to be in a given map area. I would expect richness to control how much resources per tile, and by extension, how much in on the map.

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by bobucles » Wed Mar 28, 2018 4:00 pm

Biter nests definitely generate strangely with game settings. I think the main reason is because of how nests generate. With ore generation there is a very tangible difference between "10 ore/tile" and "1000 ore/tile". With biter nests the generation is much more binary. A spot can have "no nests " or "yes nests" and there is no meaning in defining a tile as "1000 nests". In that respect the "richness" setting is very confusing, simply because biter presence has so few values to pick from. Isn't a richer nest just a bigger nest? It doesn't make much sense.

The concept of "frequency" isn't very intuitive for describing nest generation. Frequency will change the size of nests, but size also changes the size of nests. Because of this it's very hard to know exactly what sort of difficulty happens when you tweak these settings.

When players choose biter settings I think the expectation is that you're choosing a difficulty scale for the nest, and then selecting how many nests you want to fight against. In this case the simple "size" setting fits perfectly, since bigger nests are naturally much harder to fight. A second "distance between nests" also makes sense. Note that it's different from frequency in that changing average distance doesn't also change the average size. Finally a third "scaling from spawn" setting also makes sense. We don't want to start surrounded by hundreds of nests, but maybe we want to fight more biters once we expand and get confident. Without any scaling the frontier has the same level of biters, but with extreme scaling the frontier slowly gets crowded until it's a nightmare maze of biter nests.

With this 3 stage system we can much more easily anticipate what happens with biter settings:
- Very small nests, Very large separation, no scaling: The lowest difficulty setting. We can expect to see tiny nests (1-3 with maybe a worm) and the nests are obscenely far apart. This default generation stays consistent as we travel from spawn.
- Normal Nests, normal separation, normal scaling: Expect to see nests around 5-10 in size once you get outside spawn. Nests are comfortably far apart so each fight is its own thing. Expect nests to grow into 10-20'ish in size at long distance.
- Small nests, Tiny separation, normal scaling: Tiny nests are very close together and will frequently chain into larger battles. These nests become a polka dot pattern in the frontier, which can drag into large size but low intensity battles.
- Huge nests, huge separation, extreme scaling: Nests are gigantic hive clusters that almost never interact. At long distance the hive clusters are even more massive, taking up a full screen size or more. Bring nukes!
- Huge nests, tiny separation, extreme scaling: A solid red blob of death. Because you hate yourself and everyone you love. :roll:

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by Ranakastrasz » Thu May 31, 2018 3:46 pm

Very low is your problem.

First of all, Very poor does nothing now AFAIK. It used to be a modifer to how many artifacts you got from them. Since that was removed, no effect.

Very small scales the size of bases down.

Very low means bases are bigger, but less frequent.
If you set it to very high, you would get many more bases, but each one would be smaller.

Its weird and confusing, but once you realize how all 3 settings work you can manipualte them reasonable.

As frequency increases, you get more areas with stuff, but they is less of that stuff in each area. So patches of ores/Oil/Biters/Water are more common, but smaller.
Vise versa. lower frequency means less areas, but they have WAY MORE stuff in them. take up more area per area.

No matter what you do with frequency, it will always have the same total quantity of that stuff on the whole map (Approximately, and it is infinite, but ignoring those inconvinent facts)

Size, however, modifies the total amount of stuff on the map. More size means more of the stuff. More of the surface area is covered in ore/oil/enemies.
Cut this as low as you can to reduce enemy spawners.

Lastly, Density. This is how much stuff is in a single tile. Higher means more thousands of ore per tile, higher percent on average of oil. Does nothing for water, and only effected spawner's alien artifacts (when they existed)


The issue with spawners however is they expand over time. No idea how or if at all these settings effect them, but I expect "Not at all" is the correct answer. So, given enough evo factor, they will always cover tons of the map with large bases.

You can probably alter their expansion timer in enemy settings, but it didn't seem to work last time I tried.


So yea... Hope that helps.
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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by thereaverofdarkness » Sat Jun 02, 2018 8:10 pm

I turned base expansion off or low and used very small/very low setting for several of my games. With all of the bases in their default state, they cover perhaps 20% of the map, but less than 5% of it can be traversed without getting aggro, and less than 1% of it can be colonized without being in range of constant aggro from proximity to spawners. I've often hunted around for hours on my rail world looking for a decent ore patch to make an outpost, and not finding any I could use without clearing hundreds of spawners from the area.

Turning the frequency down doesn't just preserve the amount of space taken up by spawners, in fact I'm not even convinced it does. But the net result is that you have more opportunities to slip past without aggro, but when you actually intend to colonize, not only is your selection heavily dependent on where the nests spawn, even in the best cases you either must make a tiny mining outpost (often smaller than a chunk in size) or you must clear several times as many spawners as you would have had to clear in a higher frequency setting. And that's with base size set to very small. The size actually makes almost no difference, but there is a critical point going from small to very small in which you get about twice as many opportunities to slip between bases without aggro, leading to you having access to several times as much land to explore. It's barely tolerable at this setting, and basically unplayable at anything higher unless you get all your military tech done without leaving the starting area--which is totally doable but defeats the purpose of it being a rail world. I want to be forced out of the starting area to get my oil, but due to the way enemy bases spawn, there is no setting in which you can colonize much of anything outside of the starting area without squashing some spawners. And lowering the frequency of bases dramatically increases the number of spawners you must contend with.


Here's an image of my latest game after exploring it quite a bit (mostly with radars). You can see how little total coverage the spawners have, but if you understand how large their aggro radius is, then you can understand why almost all of the terrain is uninhabitable. Also, in this current game I have squashed hundreds of spawners, so a few areas are a bit more cleared out than you'll ever actually find. It's important that you understand the scale of this map. Those little squares of vision are radars, and you can see the boundaries of the starting area around the huge solar panel farm near the center. A chunk is about 4 pixels across, and that central solar farm contains 2 rectangles of 600 solar panels each. Areas I haven't gone into yet are largely inaccessible without heavy combat. I've already explored everything easier.
Image

So the point I'm making here is that:
1.) size setting does almost nothing
2.) if it did more, you could potentially get some good rail world settings which would force the player into a limited amount of terrain if they don't want to go after very large numbers of spawners



To better illustrate aggro radius, I have prepared an image. These lines are based on visual estimation and probably aren't exact.

The dark red line marks approximately how far biters and spitters patrol outside of the nest usually. They will occasionally travel much farther out than this.
The red line marks about how close you can get before you get instant aggro.
Inside orange is the range in which if you place turrets, they will get instant aggro.
Inside yellow is the range in which if the enemies aggro to the turret once, they will keep coming after it incessantly, regardless of pollution level.

Image

Note how little room there is to travel between spawner clusters here. This is highly standard on this map setting; many areas give you about this much room or less. You have to learn to estimate aggro radius so you can tell when there's actually room to move through. Also, you can see some 35 dead spawners here. This spot was not as clear initially as it is now, but the spawners had an uncommonly sparse formation so I decided to clear this ore patch. This bit of iron is a rare find in my game.

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by Hedning1390 » Thu Jun 07, 2018 2:13 am

Ranakastrasz wrote:Very small scales the size of bases down.
Only frequency affects biter bases. The other two settings work on everything else but not biter bases.
thereaverofdarkness wrote:1.) size setting does almost nothing
It does absolutely nothing.

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by thereaverofdarkness » Thu Jun 07, 2018 4:51 am

No, it makes a small difference. It was difficult to tell at first, but after exploring a large amount of terrain I was able to see a pretty significant difference between very small and very large. It was especially easy to tell during gameplay because it very often made the difference between having barely enough room to squeeze through without getting aggro, and getting aggro from both sides at once.

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by Hedning1390 » Thu Jun 07, 2018 5:18 am

Maybe it somehow affects new settlements then, because it has no effect on the generated nests, even further out. I have tested and the nests are identical.

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by thereaverofdarkness » Thu Jun 07, 2018 5:37 am

Hedning1390 wrote:because it has no effect on the generated nests
Once the nests are generated, changing the game's settings won't change the nests. You'd have to un-generate those chunks and then re-generate them.

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by Hedning1390 » Thu Jun 07, 2018 6:07 am

Do you think by testing I was standing by a nest and used console to change the settings, and then expected the nest to change before my eyes? How stupid do you think I am?

What I did was I generated a map with one set of settings then started a new game with the same seed but different settings and generated it again.

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by eradicator » Thu Jun 07, 2018 6:16 am

thereaverofdarkness wrote:
Hedning1390 wrote:because it has no effect on the generated nests
Once the nests are generated, changing the game's settings won't change the nests. You'd have to un-generate those chunks and then re-generate them.
You can regenerate spawners without deleting chunks which is somewhat faster.

Code: Select all

/c
for _,v in pairs(game.player.surface.find_entities_filtered{type='unit-spawner'}) do
 v.destroy()
 end
local spawners = {}
for _,v in pairs(game.entity_prototypes) do
 if v.type == 'unit-spawner' then
  table.insert(spawners,v.name)
  end
 end
game.player.surface.regenerate_entity(spawners)
game.player.force.rechart()

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Re: Enemies on Very Low, Very Small, Very Poor…

Post by thereaverofdarkness » Thu Jun 07, 2018 8:08 pm

Hedning1390 wrote:What I did was I generated a map with one set of settings then started a new game with the same seed but different settings and generated it again.
You're correct, I checked and the enemy base size setting makes no difference.

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